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Publisher's Summary

Now a New York Times best-selling author, Julia Spencer-Fleming rises to the accolade with a powerful, and emotionally charged novel fans have been yearning for.

On a frigid January night, Chief of Police Russ Van Alstyne and Reverend Clare Fergusson are called to the scene of a raging fire that quickly becomes a double homicide and kidnapping - which is the very last thing Russ needs.... Currently he's struggling with the prospect of impending fatherhood. And his new wife is not at all happy with his proposal for their long-delayed honeymoon: A week in an unelectrified ice-fishing cabin. The vestry of St. Alban's Church has called for the bishop to investigate Clare's "unpriestly" pregnancy. She has one week to find out if she will be scolded, censured, or suspended from her duties.

Officer Hadley Knox is having a miserable January as well. Her on-again-off-again lover, Kevin Flynn, has seven days to weigh an offer from the Syracuse Police Department that might take him half a state away. As the days and hours tick by, Russ and Clare fight personal and professional battles they've never encountered.

In the course of this one tumultuous week the lives of the Millers-Kill residents listeners have come to love and cherish change forever. Listeners have waited years for Through The Evil Days, and Julia Spencer-Fleming delivers with the exquisite skill and craftsmanship that have made her such a success.

©2013 Julia Spencer-Fleming (P)2013 Macmillan Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Really???

This series has gone off the tracks for me ever since book 7. I had #8--this book--in my library so I decided to try it hoping that Spencer-Fleming had gotten the "I can be nasty" out of her system. No such luck. Much of the action and plot are so implausible it is ridiculous and the rest is so dark and ugly it gives me pause.

I bet the Adirondack Tourist Board, the New York State Police and the Episcopal Diocese of Albany are absolutely thrilled with how they are depicted in this book by an out-of-stater. I can't even begin to list plot topics here as it is so sorted. Just look at some of the reviews on amazon and they will fill you in with great and gory detail. For me, I am bidding good bye to Clare and Russ.

25 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Such a disappointment on all levels

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No. What was a beautiful series is now trying to reach some other audience, maybe one that watches action movies. And I won't buy any more books with this reader.

If you’ve listened to books by Julia Spencer-Fleming before, how does this one compare?

I haven't listened before, and I won't buy this reader again. Russ sounds like he is an 80 year old curmudgeon and Claire sounds like Scarlett O' Hara; I was completely turned off.

Would you be willing to try another one of Suzanne Toren’s performances?

No. I'll be watching for her name to make sure I don't.

Could you see Through the Evil Days being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Maybe, but for a different audience than I. I don't even know the name of actors to play these roles, I don't watch action movies.

Any additional comments?

Very disappointed. I have always looked forward to the books in this series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A Long Wait Only to be Disappointed!

It was such a long wait for this book in the series that perhaps my expectations were too great. I found it to be slow and difficult to hold my interest. There were numerous story lines and most were left hanging. I'm hoping JSF will not take as long to complete the next book in the series because I really do enjoy Claire and Russ and all the characters in this series.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Carole T.
  • Shepherdstown, WV, United States
  • 02-01-14

Action, Suspense, Bad Weather!

Behind the main story of this book, a real controversy of current politics looms: in times of stretched budgets, does a small town/city really need its own police force? It seems the debate will continue in this series, as that particular question is not resolved here. But it adds another note of timely reality to the Fergusson/Van Alstyne novels.

"Through the Evil Days" also adds a darn good thriller to a fine series. There's lots of action and suspense, a real terror of an ice storm, and innocents aplenty in peril. For my taste, there's one or two too many "top this" twists and turns, but the story certainly moves quickly and holds the readers' interest.

Clare and Russ have proven to be a likable, believable characters who complement each other. Their marriage has not brought boredom or total peace of mind to the relationship. I like their feisty individuality and their differences. This volume also throws a great deal of light on the secondary romantic relationship of the series, and this relationship is every bit as interesting and complicated as the one between Clare and Ross. I marvel that Spencer-Fleming is so good at developing these romances while still maintaining a religious/philosophic element and first-class suspense in the series. I will definitely be back for the next adventure!

The narrator is a different issue. Although I like her basic reading voice very much, I find her extreme attempt to change tone for different characters a bit disconcerting. She tries too hard: those overly gruff male and sickeningly sweet female voices are distracting to a point nearing the absurd. There's plenty of drama in the book. I'd prefer a little less overdone narration.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

I love this series. . .

I have read every book in this series and I have really enjoyed them. I'm not sure what it is about this book, but I just can't get through it. I've been listening on and off for over a month (which is a long time for me). The narration took some getting used to but is okay. I kind of want to punch Hadley's ex, but with the relationship foreshadowing in previous books, he didn't really come as a surprise. I don't know why I can't get into this book, but I think it will be going back.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Elizabeth
  • Middlesex, VT, United States
  • 03-24-18

Losing Interest in Series

I've listened to all of the books offered on Audible and have grown increasingly discouraged with the series. The last two books in particular just aren't up to the same quality I experienced with the earlier books.

The characters just aren't likable any more...Clare, who had a serious drinking and drug problem in the last book (which her cop husband didn't notice) was whiny and secretive and in this book Russ is just being mean and condescending.

One of my issues is with the narration...the narrator is good, but too many characters are speaking with the same slow drawl. Most people don't speak that slowly.

It was a good series and I enjoyed the earlier books, but I have to admit I'm glad I'm glad I'm done with it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Another great story

Loved it, and would love to read the next Clare, and Russ Novel. E-mailed the Author.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • sandi
  • LINCOLN, NE, United States
  • 12-16-16

Reader falls short

I've read most of this series, and I'll probably read this one, but I couldn't bear to listen to the reader's rendition of the main characters' voices. The narrative was okay, but the accents for Claire and Russ were awful. Southern belle and roughneck? I think not.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Left Hanging

Would you listen to Through the Evil Days again? Why?

Suzanne Toren, the narrator makes you lose yourself in the story with her thoroughly professional performance. Each character comes to life as the story unfolds. Even so, I would not listen to this story again because the end is so unsatisfactory. Two of the characters that Spencer-Fleming makes the reader care about are smashed, metaphorically-speaking, at the very end of the book. I was left flattened with no sequel in sight!

What does Suzanne Toren bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Because of Suzanne Toren's narration, as well as fully developed characters via excellent writing on Spencer-Fleming's part, Russ and Claire are living breathing people. Each is clearly distinct as are the other characters in the story.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I barely stopped listening, except to be polite to my husband once the story got into full swing. Whew! Sp-Fleming plots one amazing twist after another!

Any additional comments?

I've read all of the Russ/Clare series and listened to most of them as well. Clare is such a complicated and sympathetic part of the story that I have been drawn back to the series and continue to enjoy the books. It surely takes some time to produce such well-written books, but, darn it! hurry up with Book 9!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

good series

As t times this series drifts into sexy romance prose. But the mystery, characters, and setting are compelling.